|Yu Darvish is the Rangers' 'big-game pitcher.' (US Presswire)|
Whether the Rangers play in Friday's wild-card game or advance to the ALDS this weekend, Yu Darvish will be pitching the team's first playoff game, Ron Washington told reporters before Wednesday's game with the A's.
If the Rangers beat the A's on Wednesday, they'll win the American League West and advance to the ALDS, lose and they play in the wild card game against either the Yankees or Orioles.
Darvish is 16-9 with a 3.09 ERA in 29 starts this season, with opposing batters hitting just .220/.313/.346 against the 26-year-old right-hander. He's 5-1 with a 2.35 ERA over his last eight starts, dating back to Aug. 12.
"He's our big-game pitcher," Washington said, according to ESPNDallas.com. "That's something he's always been in his career."
Darvish started the opening game for Japan in the 2009 World Baseball Classic, but was used in relief in the semifinals and finals of that tournament. He also has experience pitching in the postseason in Japan, winning a title with the Nippon Ham Fighters in 2006, winning the clinching Game 5 the series at the age of 20.